A new opinion poll has revealed that almost half of Scots don’t trust world leaders to come up with a solution to save the planet at COP26. With just over six weeks to go until the global summit comes to Glasgow, the YouGov survey found that people want to see firm commitments to Net Zero and the planet.

Despite concerns about what will be achieved, 65 per cent of respondents to the poll for the Global Ethical Finance Initiative (GEFI) said the summit will be important in addressing the climate emergency.

And two-thirds (66 per cent) of Scots said financial institutions should have a critical role in addressing the current climate situation, with 36 per cent stating they only want their money invested in companies which have a positive impact on the environment, even if it means lower returns.

The YouGov poll involved 1,002 adults living in Scotland, with fieldwork carried out in August. A total of 48% of respondents said they did not trust world leaders to be able to produce workable solutions to the climate crises at COP26, and only 25 per cent of 45-55 year olds (and 32 per cent of 18-25 year olds) said they trusted world leaders to deliver a sustainable future for the planet.

The Edinburgh-based Global Ethical Finance Initiative said the role of other institutions like the world’s banks and investment companies will come under even more scrutiny as a result.

GEFI has been driving action on green and sustainable finance for over a decade and has partnered with over 60 financial organisations as part of the ‘Path to COP26’ campaign which are committed to making the Glasgow summit a success.

GEFI has also teamed up with Make My Money Matter, the Richard Curtis inspired campaign, to help us all realise the power to change the world by choosing where we invest our money.


Omar Shaikh, CEO of GEFI, said:

“Confidence in world leaders ahead of COP26 is low, so the role of other institutions like the world’s banks and investment companies is even more important.

“Imagine what Scotland’s £600bn pension pot could do for our planet.

“The green power of people’s money is not well understood and the Global Ethical Finance Initiative is working with banks and investors across the globe to change the financial system to support a sustainable, zero carbon future.

“This survey shows that we can all take more notice of where our money is invested and make every pound count as part of the solution to the ‘code red’ climate emergency.”



All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 1002 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 12th – 16th August 2021.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).

A round up of key findings can be found here.